The best way to Begin a Podcast in 2020: No Fluff (Simply the Necessities)

The best way to Begin a Podcast in 2020: No Fluff (Simply the Necessities)


The time has come.

that concept bouncing round behind your thoughts? That dream, fearlessly waging battle towards your inside fears?

It’s time to let it out.

It’s time to start out your podcast.

The one drawback?

You don’t know how to start out a podcast. And the considered wading by means of a 20,000-word “Final Information” leaves you with a roaring headache and the overwhelming want to ditch your podcasting goals.

Effectively, no extra excuses. This text will train you every little thing you want to find out about beginning a podcast, and it’ll do it with out filler, fluff, and long-winded particulars that don’t actually matter.

So let’s dive in, we could?

Which means you want to begin with a subject you might be obsessed with. One that you simply’re so obsessive about, your folks typically need to kindly ask you to close up about it.

Should you’re studying this text, you most likely have already got an concept about that subject. So let’s take into account the opposite half of the equation: your listeners.

The important thing to picking a subject in your podcast is to seek for that magical zone the place your obsessions overlap along with your viewers’s pursuits.

So earlier than committing to a subject, search for comparable podcasts to see what number of followers and opinions they’ve.

If there are already many common podcasts in your area of interest, that’s a great signal: The extra folks producing and consuming podcasts on a subject, the extra viable the subject.

Subsequent, attempt to provide you with an inventory of 50-100 potential episodes on this subject. If it’s straightforward so that you can brainstorm this record, then that’s one other good signal.

However watch out.

You don’t desire a subject so broad it received’t enchantment to your particular viewers. As comic Invoice Cosby as soon as mentioned, “I don’t know the important thing to success, however the important thing to failure is attempting to please all people.”

Your core demographic will not be “all people.” Take into consideration your preferrred listener and select a subject that’s slim sufficient so that you can stand out, but broad sufficient so that you can communicate on it for 100+ episodes.

For instance, the Good Blogger podcast, Break Through the Noise with Jon Morrow, has the flexibleness to cowl a wider vary of matters because it grows. It’s not locked into an excessively slim theme.

As you might be brainstorming the proper identify in your podcast, listed here are some finest practices to bear in mind:

Be clear

Ideally, listeners ought to know what your podcast is about simply by its identify. This isn’t 100% vital, since most podcast platforms embody a brief description, however typically folks don’t learn descriptions, so higher protected than sorry.


Attempt to embody your goal key phrase within the title

Apple podcasts is a search engine, and the most effective methods to assist it advocate your podcast to the precise listeners is to incorporate your goal key phrase within the title. Simply watch out to not key phrase stuff! Make it pure.


Be constant

If you have already got a model, or a recognizable identify, think about using that in your podcast.


Mix methods

Another choice is to mix a transparent title along with your private, model, or enterprise identify.

Don’t be too lengthy or wordy. You need to make it straightforward for folks to seek out your podcast. Should you nonetheless can’t resolve on a reputation, have a look at different podcast names for inspiration. Take a look at podcasts inside and outdoors your area of interest.


However don’t get caught on this step. Decide a reputation and transfer on!

Creating an eye catching cowl picture

Listed below are some finest practices to bear in mind:

  • Use minimal textual content. The less phrases and characters, the higher. No matter textual content you employ ought to be readable even at low resolutions, similar to 150 x 150 pixels.
  • Your cowl picture ought to be a minimal of 1400 x 1400 pixels, max 3000 x 3000 pixels for bigger screens just like the iPad.
  • Shoot for 72 DPI (dots per inch) JPG or PNG format, underneath 500kb dimension in RGB colour house.

The best way to create your individual cowl picture

If you wish to create your individual paintings in your podcast, you need to use a free service similar to Canva. Merely sort in “CD covers” (that are 1400 x 1400 pixels) whereas looking templates, or create your individual design from scratch.

If you wish to take it one step additional, you’ll be able to create a vector-based illustration in a program similar to Adobe Illustrator. These pictures stay clear at any dimension.

Hiring somebody to create your cowl artwork

Should you choose outsourcing your paintings, you’ll be able to rent any individual by means of Upwork, Fiverr, or 99designs.

Editor’s Word: Creator and illustrator Jaime Buckley is one other nice choice. He’s created paintings for me earlier than, and his work is top-notch (and reasonably priced).

Give them the small print of your podcast, in addition to the podcast picture dimension specs, and any model colours or pictures you need to embody.

Word: if you’re planning to speculate money and time in hiring knowledgeable to design your paintings for you, be sure to know what you need and provides clear instructions.

As an alternative, search for royalty-free music or purchase a one-time business license from platforms similar to:

  • Shutterstock: Provides a limiteless music subscription for a month-to-month charge. You can too license particular person tracks for a one-time value.
  • Audiojungle: A whole lot of 1000’s of tracks, sound results, and jingles for any of your musical wants. You should purchase a subscription or buy particular person gadgets as wanted.
  • Epidemic Sound: Subscribe (month-to-month or yearly) to get entry to tens of 1000’s of tracks and sound results, with new tracks added weekly.
  • Melodyloops: Purchase packets of royalty-free melodies for a set value.

Should you’re on a price range, you’ll be able to ask a musical pal to make you one thing, or try these platforms:

  • Imcompetech: A group of 1000’s of Artistic Commons tracks (free to make use of when you correctly attribute the artists and the observe title) and paid licenses (when you don’t).
  • SilvermanSound: Royalty free music with attribution. You can too get a non-attribution license for a charge.
  • Free Music Archive: A group of music from artists world wide. Free to obtain underneath the Artistic Commons license.
  • Purple Planet Music: Provides royalty free music in addition to paid prime quality business license tracks.
  • DigCCMixtr: A music discovery website providing free and paid, business tracks.
  • Zapsplat: Tens of 1000’s of free and paid sound results (and counting!) to make use of all through your podcasts.

The draw back of getting free music is that you simply received’t have music that’s distinctive to your podcast.

Your listeners may hear snatches of the very same observe on different podcasts, YouTube channels, and so on. So in order for you unique music, purchase it or rent somebody to create it for you.

And take the time to discover a observe that you simply actually like, as a result of as your “signature sound,” you don’t need to change your music when you’ve begun.

Your Microphone

To be a killer podcaster, you want a correct weapon. Ahem. I imply, microphone.

Audio is every little thing in relation to podcasting, so if you wish to splurge on one thing, get your self a great microphone.

And no matter you do, do NOT use your built-in pc microphone. The audio high quality is atrocious and there’s not a lot you are able to do on the modifying finish to repair that.

When selecting a microphone, you might have a alternative between two fundamental choices:

USB vs XLR mics

USB mics are plug-and-play microphones that are usually cheaper and simpler to make use of, however much less customizable than XLRs.

XLR mics require an additional cable and audio interface to work. They are usually dearer and better high quality than USB microphones.

An XLR mic + audio interface is the way in which to go if in case you have a co-host and have to document a couple of individual in a single room, as a result of plugging in a number of mics into USB ports can mess up your sound high quality, and recording a couple of individual on one mic could make it tough to edit your audio.

For a microphone that offers you the choice of each USB and XLR, try the Audio-Technica ATR2100x (affiliate hyperlink), Blue Yeti (affiliate hyperlink), or Samson Q2U (affiliate hyperlink) on Amazon.

Your Audio Recording-Enhancing Software program

Audacity is a unbelievable audio recording/modifying software program for inexperienced persons.

Audacity works on Home windows, Mac, and Linux computer systems, and might document, playback, edit, and export your audio into quite a lot of completely different audio codecs (MP3, WAV, FLAC, and so on). Plus, not like Pamela and a few of its freemium opponents, Audacity is open-source and free.

If you’re a Mac person, Garageband is one other free audio software program you have already got, and if you wish to dive deeper into dwelling recording, you may also put money into a Digital Audio Workstation (DAW).

Should you want any professional options that Audacity and Garageband don’t supply, Adobe Audition is $20.99 per thirty days, and it’s obtainable for each Home windows and Mac.

Different (Optionally available) Recording Tools

A pop filter

If it didn’t come along with your microphone, you could need to purchase a pop filter, a noise safety display screen that helps to scale back or eradicate sibilance (hissing noises) and plosives (popping noises).

A pair of headphones

Headphones defend your microphone from choosing up further sounds out of your pc audio system. In addition they assist you hear what you sound like as you communicate, so you’ll be able to alter your presentation type.

You don’t need to get fancy, a pair of earbuds will do exactly high quality.

Increase arm

Relying on the microphone you purchase, a boom arm (affiliate hyperlink) might be a worthwhile buy. Respectable ones can be found on Amazon for underneath $20.

Interview Software program

Should you plan to speak to folks long-distance, you’ll need to put money into interview software program, similar to:

  • Squadcast: This platform provides videoconferencing and information on separate tracks for every speaker.
  • Zoom: This easy-to-use software for distant interviews provides above-average audio high quality, however doesn’t save audio to separate tracks.
  • Callnote: This software program information GotoMeeting, WebEx, Facetime, Skype, Google Hangouts, and extra.

Hosts cost a month-to-month service charge to host your audio information and generate the RSS feed you want to submit your podcast to podcasting directories (so listeners can discover you).

The best way to Decide a Podcast Host

Podcast hosts are (virtually) as assorted as mobile phone suppliers. When selecting a number, take into account these elements:

  • Longevity & dependability: Will your host stand the check of time?
  • Flexibility & adaptability: What’s your host’s storage capabilities?
  • Web site integrations: Does your host combine along with your web site or create a website for you?
  • Analytics: How in-depth is your host’s analytics?
  • Monetization assist: Will your host assist or hinder your monetization efforts?

Listed below are a couple of podcast internet hosting providers to look into:


Libsyn has been round since 2004, and provides plans with limitless bandwidth and monetization choices, WordPress integration (with their Libsyn Writer Hub plugin) and detailed analytics.


Podbean began in 2006, and provides 24/7 assist, distribution to all the most important apps and podcast directories, and your individual podcast website. Their Limitless Plus Plan, provides you entry to a patron program, promoting capabilities, and video assist.


Buzzsprout provides an easy-to-use analytics dashboard, making it straightforward to add, schedule, fill in meta-details, and submit your podcast to a number of podcast directories.


Blubrry podcast internet hosting plans begin at $12 per thirty days. At that introductory value you get 100MB storage every month and limitless bandwidth. Should you want extra, $80 per thirty days offers you 1,000MB of cupboard space.

Free internet hosting

Some hosts supply free podcasting plans, however these plans include limits:

  • Buzzsprout means that you can add 2 hours of content material which they host for 90 days.
  • Podbean means that you can add 5 hours of content material per thirty days at max 100GB of bandwidth and solely fundamental statistics.
  • Speaker’s free plan contains commercials, you’ll have to pay to take away them.
  • Anchor is a 100% free platform targeted on “democratizing audio.” However they had been the middle of a terms and conditions controversy in 2018.
  • Soundcloud means that you can add as much as Three hours of audio solely.

So watch out with free plans, and know that in order for you your podcast to develop and be aggressive, it’s price investing in a great host.

Write Your Script

Podcasting is like giving a speech. It’s finest when you plan what you’re going to say earlier than you say it, by writing it out.

You don’t have to put in writing every little thing phrase for phrase, however the extra planning you do, the much less issues you’ll have later.

You can write out a word-for-word speech, when you like, however do not forget that whenever you flip that microphone on, you need to communicate as if speaking to a pal.

Put together Your Setting

Earlier than you document your first episode, just remember to’ve arrange the very best recording atmosphere.

Take away all distractions (children, pets, and annoying voice search units) and select a room that’s not positioned close to a busy road and doesn’t have many exhausting reflective surfaces. Use curtains and carpets to soak up noise air pollution.

Create Your Intro and Outro

Should you plan to create a recurring intro and outro, have that prepared so as to add to your episodes. In your intro, be sure to point out your podcast identify, subject, and host identify. And your outro is a superb place to incorporate your name to motion.

Document Your Episode

Together with your script written and atmosphere arrange, you’re prepared to start out recording!

First, plug in your tools and open your recording software program. Ensure that your pc acknowledges your mic because the supply of audio enter, then hit document.

Bear in mind, you don’t need to document an ideal voiceover in a single take. Take your time, and be at liberty to re-record when you make errors.

Edit Your Audio (Put up-Manufacturing)

Enhancing entails slicing out errors, decreasing background noise, balancing sound ranges, including your intro and outro, and making the episode simpler for folks to listen to.

Should you used Audacity to document your audio, you’ll be able to edit your audio file within the applications instantly. (To find out how, try Audacity’s tutorials.)

As all the time, you may also rent somebody that will help you with modifying, when you choose.

Save Your Recording

Once you’re completed recording your audio, put it aside as an MP3 file. In Audacity, meaning clicking on “File” → “Export” → “Export as MP3”:

Podcast audacity export mp3

Identify your audio file utilizing a template, one thing like “podcast name-episode number-episode name-date.”

podcast audacity name file

podcast audacity name file

Should you’re utilizing Audacity, the default normal high quality MP3 ought to be high quality. Should you’re utilizing a unique service, shoot for a bitrate of round 128 kbps and 44.1Mhz (CD high quality).

Once you do, you’ll be prompted to incorporate ID3 metadata that shops info associated to an MP3 file.

You can too embody this info when exporting your file from Audacity:

podcast ID3 tags

podcast ID3 tags

Audacity features a house so that you can add the artist identify (in your case, podcast host identify), observe title (episode title), album title (podcast identify), observe quantity (episode quantity), yr, style, and different feedback.

For every podcast episode, you’ll need to put together an episode title so listeners know what your episode is about. You additionally need to embody present notes, which might embody an outline of the content material (together with related key phrases to make your episode simpler to seek out), timestamps, hyperlinks to your website, and so on.

If that is your first time importing to your host, you’ll be requested to incorporate your podcast title, paintings, and outline.

Then, when you’ve crammed out all the required info, your host will move it on to your podcast directories in order that your podcast may be discovered by future followers.

And talking of these directories…

Importing Your Podcast to Apple Podcasts

Step 1. Register to iTunes Connect utilizing your Apple ID (when you don’t have one, you’ll be able to create one without cost).

Step 2. Click on on the Podcasts Join button.

Step 3. Enter your podcast RSS feed URL (which you get out of your podcast host) and click on “validate.” Click on Undergo proceed.

Step 4. Apple will overview your podcast and also you’ll be notified through e mail when it’s accepted.

Importing Your Podcast to Spotify

Step 1. Go to Spotify for Podcasters and log in to your account (or create one when you don’t have one but).

Step 2. As soon as you might be logged in, go to the “Add your podcast” web page and click on “Get began.”

Step 3. Enter your RSS feed and click on Subsequent.

Step 4. Add related information to the “Add podcast information” web page, overview, and submit.

Word: It will possibly take a couple of hours as much as 5 days in your podcast to look on Spotify, so be affected person. Additionally, Spotify requires audio to be in MP3 audio with bitrates between 96-320 kbps and episodes not more than 200MB (about 83 minutes at 320kbps or 200 minutes at 128kbps).

Importing Your Podcast to Google/Android

Step 1. Go to the Google Play Music web site and click on Publish.

Step 2. Register utilizing your e mail, and submit your podcast URL.

Step 3. As soon as you might be accepted, your podcast will probably be listed on Google Podcasts.

Different Podcast Directories

Whereas Apple, Google, and Spotify are hottest podcasting directories, you may also add your podcast to different platforms, together with Stitcher, TuneIn, Overcast, and so on. The extra locations you might be, the simpler listeners can discover you.

Launch your podcast with a splash!

Earlier than you launch your podcast, generate buzz.

Ship an announcement to your folks, household, and followers in your mailing record. Embody the announcement in your e mail signature.

Inform folks in actual life and on social media in regards to the impending launch of your superior new podcast.

Create a pre-launch crew, like authors do with guide launches, to create a snowball impact and improve anticipation in your podcast.

On Debut Day, launch a number of episodes directly, ideally 3-5, in order that listeners can instantly binge-listen to a number of episodes with out ready.

Ask everybody you recognize to subscribe and go away a overview, and reward them by studying high opinions or thanking folks by identify on new episodes of the podcast.

Create audiograms for every episode

An audiogram is a snippet of your podcast episode that you may share on social media to pique the curiosity of potential listeners.

You need to use the Wavve or Headliner app to simply create a visually interesting audiogram to share in your Fb, LinkedIn, and different social media channels. Each have free plans in addition to premium choices.

Make the most of your web site

Should you don’t have already got a self-hosted web site, it is best to take into account creating one as a result of you’ll be able to leverage that website to share your podcast, running a blog content material, create and promote merchandise and programs, and so on.

(Simply make sure your podcast web site is search engine optimization pleasant so Google will give it some love.)

If you have already got a web site, be sure to promote your podcast on that website. For instance, you’ll be able to repurpose your podcast episodes into weblog posts by transcribing and modifying your audio.

Function your podcast in your homepage and About web page, hyperlink to particular podcast episodes inside your weblog posts, and embed a podcast participant in your website for guests.

Be a visitor (and invite visitors onto your present)

To supercharge your promotion, attempt to be a visitor on different, extra established podcasts in your area of interest, and invite podcast hosts/influencers to be a visitor in your present. This may introduce your podcast to an viewers that’s already fascinated about your subject.

Podcast listeners typically discover new podcast suggestions whereas listening to their favourite reveals, so the extra you community, the higher.

By no means cease selling!

The easiest way to advertise your podcast is by phrase of mouth.

So carry up your podcast each time it is sensible. Speak about it with your folks, share it in social media teams, and write about it to your e mail record.

Most of all, produce a outstanding podcast that folks will need to share with their associates. Should you constantly create useful content material frequently, your viewers will come to you.

Go Forth and Podcast!

Most individuals who take into consideration beginning a podcast by no means get began.

Don’t be certainly one of them.

Simply get began, and take it one step at a time.

This text can train you learn how to get off the bottom, however the ardour to unfold your message? You have already got that.

So what are you ready for?

We will’t wait to listen to what it’s important to say.


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